This was posted on Boat Point today.
Total photo(s): 1
Ramp rage at Roseville
New ramp set for summer chaos, fights and conflict
There’s a saying that a little bit of information is dangerous. This seems to be the case with the local Warringhah Council responsible for the recent upgrade of Roseville Boat Ramp, one of Sydney’s most popular trailerboat launch spots.
Forget the fact the job wasn’t finished on time. After all, the upgrade of Roseville boat ramp in the Garigal National Park was no stroll in the park. Some $1.01 million was spent on repairs and on a new ramp pontoon with disability access. We have since learnt a new amenities block was added too.
The old three-wide concrete slab, which at times could accommodate four boats being launched abreast, retains its gradual incline. It still necessitates reversing till the rear wheels are at least partially submerged.
But in its wisdom, the council added a centre pontoon to the ramp. On paper, this sounds like a good idea. After all, plenty of Queensland boat ramps have a handy pontoon running alongside to facilitate dry-feet launch and retrieval.
Ahem, here’s the rub. The pontoon running down the middle of Roseville ramp is three metres wide, taking up a valuable launch lane and, should a couple of boats be tied to it, it prevents others from launching.
This is sure to fuel ramp rage in the high season in summer, as those launching short-handed will likely leave their boat(s) tied to the pontoon and, thus, block the ramp while parking their car.
While the reason for such a wide and obtrusive walkway is to allow disabled boating access, Roseville always had a pontoon off to the side of the ramp to facilitate this.
Harbour fishing guide no no no has loaded dozens of wheelchair anglers onto his boat from the old pontoon, which he says has a better and lower height than the new one, which is at gunwale height. And some of the bollards are located so close to shore they will be of no use at all.
Surely, no-one wants to place disabled boaters in the middle of a busy boat ramp. The old pontoon off to the side is the place for that. With a boat or two tied to the pontoon, the lane is effectively closed. It’s going to be chaos in summer.
Incidentally, the new amenities block was located in such a way it’s taken up five valuable car-parking spots. A site adjacent to the ramp, formerly occupied by an illegal building, was the obvious location for that.
All of which might sound like a trifling local issue for those who don’t use Roseville ramp in upper Middle Harbour. But be warned. There seems to be no code about how to build a boat ramp and, moreover, no input from those who use them.
Councils are left to their own devices and what they know about boating you could write on the back of a postage stamp.
Surely, the various state bodies could share notes and come up with a variety of best-example ramps for various environments from estuary calms to ocean locales?
And while they’re at it, why not add some plans for good fish-cleaning tables.
Meanwhile, after a cool $1 million in taxpayer’s money, Roseville ramp stands as a blueprint of what not to do!
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